Read Aston Villa have claimed in an exclusive that both Villa and Arsenal are tussling for Al Ahly goalkeeper Mohamed El Shenawy after an impressive African Cup of Nations campaign.
Egypt only managed to reach the last 16 before suffering a 1-0 loss to South Africa, but it was the only goal El Shenawy conceded in the four matches he played. He kept clean sheets against Zimbabwe, DR Congo and Uganda.
Villa already boast Egypt captain Ahmed El-Mohamady and have now signed Trezeguet, but Dean Smith is looking to solve his goalkeeping woes by bringing a third Egyptian in the form of El Shenawy.
It is believed that Al Ahly would want £2.5million for the 30-year-old stopper, and that Arsenal are leading the chase as the Gunners look to bring in back-up for Bernd Leno. Both sides are in talks.
But the Egyptian contingent at Villa Park and first-team football could help Villa win the race. He has a contract at his current club – where he has clocked up 44 clean sheets in 77 matches – until the summer of 2022.
TBR’s view – Arsenal or Villa – tough decision for El Shenawy.
It certainly is a tough decision. With Arsenal qualifying for the Europa League, there will certainly be plenty of chances for the Egyptian stopper to get game time with the Gunners.
But at Villa, he would be first choice with only the likes of Lovre Kalinic and Jed Steer standing in his way. The presence of both Trezeguet and El Mohamady is also likely to tempt El Shenawy.
Arsenal have an Egyptian of their own in midfielder Mohamed Elneny, but he is expected to leave the Emirates.